Ci wara headdress - ROM2004_946_4

ROM2004_946_4

Ci wara headdress

Maker: Bamana
Medium:Wood
Geography: Mali
Date: 20th century
Object number: 959.46
Credit Line: Gift of Mr. Samuel J. Zacks
Not on view
DescriptionOne of the best known art forms of the Bamana people of Mali are Ci wara crest masks. Even though their appearance may vary according to regional differences, these sculpted headdresses all represent Ci wara, the farming (ci) wild animal (wara) who taught mankind how to cultivate the earth. In the vertical type of headdress, this supernatural being is a stylized combination of antelope horns, aardvark body and the textured skin of a pangolin. Since the early 20th century, the popularity of these objects in the Western art market has stimulated the production of a broad range of commercial examples for the consumption of urban elites and international customers. 
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